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The 39 Melachos

The 39 Melachos

The Basic Premise of Tzoveya Tzoveya, dyeing, is the colouring of any material or substance. This can be achieved either through changing the colour or adding an extra coating. Furthermore, the colour doesn’t even have to be changed; Tzoveya is transgressed merely by darkening or enriching an existing colour. Any material or substance (even a liquid) which is usually coloured, painted or dyed for a useful purpose is subject to Tzoveya. The difference between Tzoveya and

Kosaiv, writing, is that Tzoveya is just a change in colour

of a substance whereas Kosaiv, writing, is the creation of

a symbol or letter. So, drawing letters would be Kosaiv

but tracing over the letters with a coloured marker to decorate the letters would be Tzoveya.

In the Mishkan As explained in earlier Melachos, wool was required to make the cloths which were draped over the Mishkan, the Yerios. Once the wool had been cleaned and combed,

it was ready for dyeing. The three different dyes required

for the Yerios were Techeiles- sky-blue, Argomon- purple, and Tolaas Shoni- red. These are in fact taught to us in this week’s Sedra (25:4 and 26:1)! According to Rashi and the majority of Rishonim, at least one of the dyes, Tolaas Shoni, was derived from herbs and produced through the first eleven Melachos. After combing, the wool was soaked in the dye solution. The skins of rams were also dyed red in this manner. However, the Yerushalmi says that Tzoveya was performed on the rams’ skins in a remarkable manner. When the rams were still alive, they were beaten with reeds until they bruised so the skin reddened. The rams were then slaughtered and skinned. These reddened rams skins are referred to in the Torah (twice in this week’s Sedra 25:5 and 26:14) as ‘םלִ יאֵ תֹרֹע םימִ דָאָ מְ

Temporary Colouring M’deoraisa, Tzoveya can only occur when the colouring is permanent. Nevertheless, even temporary colouring, known as Aino Miskayim, is prohibited M’derabanan. However, a colouring effect that is very brief is normally permitted when it occurs unintentionally or indirectly. For example, it is permitted to affectionately pinch a child’s cheek even though it may briefly go red. Also, even if the brief colouring effect is intentional, it is still permitted if it occurs indirectly. For example, it is permitted to wear glasses that darken in the sunlight outside on Shabbos as the colouring occurs indirectly. There is no problem of Makeh B’Patish with the glasses as the darkening of the lens is part of its regular designed function.

Exemptions It is permitted to colour foods as foods are not substances which are ordinarily dyed. This exemption is called ‘Ein Tzovya B’ochlin.’ Another exemption is the principle of Derech Lichluch, similar to the exemption of Melabein. If the colouring has a negative effect on the substance being coloured then Tzoveya doesn’t apply.

Applications of Tzoveya It is forbidden to put on nail polish on Shabbos under Tzoveya; even clear nail polish is forbidden as the layer of polish adds a glossy finish to the nail and is considered an enhancement of the natural colour of the nail. It is likewise forbidden to apply lipstick due to Tzoveya. In addition, if the lipstick is a solid stick, using it is forbidden under the Melacha of Memacheik, smoothing. According to some Poskim, it is forbidden to sunbathe on Shabbos as the suntan permanently darkens or reddens the skin. However, one is still allowed to sit or walk outside on a sunny day even if there is a likelihood of tanning as the tanning is unintentional.

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Sammy Liebert Shraggi Rubenstein Director: Rabbi D Meyer ד״סב עיעעעלעעעלענעלעעערעמעהע
Sammy Liebert Shraggi Rubenstein Director: Rabbi D Meyer ד״סב עיעעעלעעעלענעלעעערעמעהע


Liebert Shraggi Rubenstein Director: Rabbi D Meyer ד״סב עיעעעלעעעלענעלעעערעמעהע

עיעעעלעעעלענעלעעערעמעהע עעעועהעעע ערע עעעיעלעלעהעלעהעלעעעערעעענעמעיעהענעעעיעעעלעעעלענעלעעערעמעהע עעעועהעעע עמע עיערעעענעיעמעלעהעעעערע עתע ע ע עעעמענעלעלעל

המורת ד“עשת א רדא 1st February 2014

This Shabbos, Daily Nach will be up to Mishlei Perek 30 Email or visit for more information.

Issue No: 455 Shabbos In: 4:32 Shabbos Out: 5:43 Sof Zman Krias Shema: 9:56

Dvar Torah

Dvar Torah

In this week’s Parsha, Hashem instructs Moshe Rabbeinu

to build the Mishkan as a physical dwelling place for Hashem to bestow his Shechina in this world. The Aron,

the most revered of the Keilim, would house the precious Luchos, the Tablets and Sefer Torah, and would be placed

in the most prominent place in the Mishkan - the Kodesh

Kodoshim. The measurements of the Aron were two and

a half Amos (cubits) long by one and a half Amos wide

with a height of one and a half Amos. As in all aspects of

Torah, there is infinite depth and essence hidden behind each word and concept and one can only be intrigued as to which lofty gems are hidden behind these particular intricate details.

Our Sages teach us that from the fact that the measurements of the Aron were all half measurements, we can learn that when it comes to Torah and spiritual achievement (hinted to by the Aron) a person should never feel complete but rather always have the urge to strive and perfect themselves even more (hinted to by the ‘incomplete’ half measurements). A feeling of perfection and completion can cause a person to stop growing spirit- ually which could ultimately end in a spiritual downfall.

Therefore, one would expect that the vessel representing physical sustenance - the Shulchan, should have complete measurements. This would show us the corresponding message that when it comes to our physical needs, we should feel complete and content with the basic necessities and shouldn’t waste time seeking unnecessary physical pleasures. However, the measurements are two Amos long by one Amah wide by; one and a half Amos high! How does this fit in with the idea we have expressed above?

The Kli Yakar answers that although the two complete measurements do represent this idea, the height nevertheless teaches us another lesson. A person should not be haughty and feel that he is above others. This is represented in the ‘incomplete’ height of the Shulchan. The Kli Yakar brings a second idea. A person should not indulge in physicality, rather he should ‘break’ and overcome his physical inclination. This is hinted to in the ‘broken’ measurement of the Shulchan’s height.

Many of you reading this will remember the late Rabbi Joseph Freilich zt”l; the glint in his eye and his constant smile are still vivid in my mind, always overflowing with new insights and fresh ideas. He explained a third idea. A bystander watching a lavish Friday night Shabbos meal, might mistake this as yet another physical extravagance, and this might be true for someone who cannot see slightly beyond the fish on his plate. In truth, we all know that a Shabbos meal is a completely different experience, starting with the Kiddush where we pronounce the sanctification of the day over a cup of wine, the seemingly ultimate indulgence, and continue by having an abundant meal which we elevate to a spiritual realm with blessings, Zemiros and Torah discussions; far beyond a mundane family party.

This is all alluded to in the Shulchan. On face value, one sees a physical table with complete measurements, hinting to the finite and limited world we live in. The fact that we have the ability to transpose and sanctify the physical into something much greater and everlasting is alluded to in the half measurement height of the Shulchan, showing us that it is up to us to elevate the physical into spiritual.

Geonim Story

Geonim Story

Rabbi Meir ben Baruch, who is more commonly known as the Maharam of Rottenburg was born in Germany. He was subject to witnessing many terrible acts of anti-Semitism and it is his Kinah, lamenting the burning of 24 Talmudic Manuscripts, which we recite on Tisha’ah B’av.

Rabbi Meir’s ultimate aim was to travel to Israel and continue authoring his commentaries and Seforim there. Therefore he bravely embarked on a journey to Eretz Yisroel in the year 1286, along with his entire family and many of his fellow Torah Scholars from Germany.

However, while passing through Lombardy in Italy, Rabbi Meir was recognised by an apostate Jew who was accompanying the archbishop of Mainz. The archbishop did not hesitate to arrest Rabbi Meir and immediately sent him back to Germany. In Germany, the Archbishop had ensured that the king would imprison Rabbi Meir in an impregnable fortress in Ensisheim and would hold him for a ransom.

The king knew that the Jews of the area would not hesitate to pay any ransom price set and indeed

the sum of 20,000 Marks was raised in no time whatsoever. Rabbi Meir, however, understood that his capture would set a precedent for many future imprisonments of Rabbonim by the greedy and cruel German rulers at the time. Thus Rabbi Meir insisted he remain in prison and he forbade anyone from paying his ransom lest these events become a more regular occurrence.

For seven years Rabbi Meir remained a prisoner in the fortress until his eventual death in 1293. During this period of time, his Talmidim were permitted to meet with him and he even managed to write a number of famous Seforim from within the prison walls. After he died, the authorities refused to surrender his body, it was only 14 years later, when a heavy ransom was paid by Alexander Suskind Wimpfen of Frankfurt that Rabbi Meir’s body was returned. In return Alexander Suskind requested simply, that after his own death his body should be laid to rest next to that of Rabbi Meir. His wish was carried out when he died a year later, and even today two tombstones can still be seen erected side by side, one for the great Rabbi Meir ben Baruch and the other for Reb Alexander Suskind Wimpfen of Frankfurt.

the other for Reb Alexander Suskind Wimpfen of Frankfurt. Q) What should one do if he

Q) What should one do if he starts leining an

Aliyah from the wrong place in the Torah?

A) If one starts from a place which is either

further down or up than the correct place, but in the correct column, he should finish the pasuk and resume from the correct


However, if he has started from a place

which is not in the correct column then the Oleh should recite the Berachos again.

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Dvar Torah

Dvar Torah

In this week’s Parsha, Parshas Terumah, Hashem commands Moshe to begin collecting the materials needed for the construction of the Mishkan. Ha- shem says to Moshe (25:2), “ לאֵ רָשְ ִי יֵנבְ לאֶ רבֵ דַּ וֹבלִ וּנּבֶ דְ ִי רשֶׁ אֲ שׁיאִ לכָ תאֵ מֵ המָ וּרתְ ילִ וּחקְ ִיְו”— “Speak to the children of Israel, and have them take for Me an offering from every person whose heart inspires him to generosity.” Directly after this command, the Torah starts describing all the parts of the Mishkan and the vessels to be brought inside. The first item that is described by the Torah is the Aron that held the Luchos and a Sefer Torah. It says in the Pasuk (25:10), “םיטִ שִׁ יצֵ עֲ ןוֹראֲ וּשעָ ְו”— “And they shall make me an Ark of acacia wood.”

Interestingly, later on in Parshas Vayakhel, we read that Betzalel decided to erect the Mishkan before he made the Aron Hakodesh. The Midrash explains that Betzalel thought it would be disrespectful to build the Aron and then keep it out in the open without a house. At first, Moshe rebuked Betzalel and asked him to change the order back, but Hashem agreed with Betzalel and the Mishkan was built first.

If this was the case that the Aron was built before the Mishkan, why does the Torah here in Terumah tell us the specifications for the Aron first?

The Midrash explains that discussing the specifications for the Aron first highlights to us that

if any endeavour is to succeed, it must be built on a strong foundation of Torah. The Midrash then adds that the first thing Hashem created in the world was light, which symbolises Torah.

This message can be seen clearly in our times. Each time the Bnei Yisrael went into exile they were always preceded by Torah. When Yaakov went down to Egypt, he realised they would only hold on to Judaism if there were Torah institutions up and running already. Therefore, he sent Yehuda ahead to establish a Yeshiva in Goshen. This ultimately led to the Bnei Yisrael just about clinging on to their identity through the years of slavery. Without the Torah institutions they surely would have assimilated completely with Egyptian society.

Similarly, 11 years before the Bnei Yisrael went into exile in Babylon, a few Rabbis moved there to set up Torah institutions. If we examine our history, each time before a mass migration by the Jews, Torah institutions were set up first. The only exception to this was the migration to the USA in the late 1800s and early 1900s. During this time there were no Yeshivas in America. History shows that as a result the biggest movement away from Judaism occurred and still nowadays, there are extremely high levels of intermarriage in America. Torah is the backbone of Judaism and the basis of Jewish life and if we want Judaism to grow and flourish, Torah must always come first.


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